It's been explained to me that this is because my music collection is around 200GB, so my iTunes Library.xml file is around 60MB, and any action (playing a song, renaming, etc.) rewrites the entire XML file on disk (incrementing play count, renaming, etc.).
And this is on a MacBook Air with SSD under Lion!
My music library is about 100GB and accordingly, my iTunes library XML is 31.2MB. My system operates on an SSD, but the entire iTunes DB is located on an internal 2TB hard drive, it's my slow one too.
Never experienced this or anything close to this. It could be a bug related to libraries around 200GB or an XML file of over 60MB or something, but it's not directly because of the fact that iTunes re-writes the XML file when you make any change.
That does happen, but it shouldn't lock up iTunes unless there is something wrong with your computer. Why? Because iTunes doesn't even use that XML file. It only exists to give 3rd party apps direct access to the iTunes library info. I can jump through my 20,700 song library, with the iTunes folder open watching it rewrite that XML file every time I do anything. No machine slowdown to speak of, on both a Mac Pro and an 11 inch MacBook Air where the library is in the same location as the system.
I think there is something wrong with your machine. This would drive me absolutely insane, and I use iTunes every single day for hours a day, almost without exception.
Mine does the same since it is on a external USB HDD. On a internal SATA drive it is instant.
So for file renames I understand, but not for playcounts or playlist changes or anything like that -- because those should access my SSD only, and not touch the external drive.
I love it, I just reloaded OS X and it keeps trying to start iTunes. Everytime I just deny the TOS and it slinks away. Good riddance.
External drives, network locations, internal secondary drives, over the years my needs and requirements have changed. iTunes has worked in all those locations. My current library has a creation date of 2009.
Initial import does take quite some time. Good thing I haven't had to do it since... well 2009 I guess.
iTunes isn't the black box people make it out to be. iOS device management through iTunes is, I'm not even going to touch that one. However the regular library functions of iTunes are quite simple and keeping a library from being destroyed isn't difficult.
> Good riddance.
Still the best library based jukebox for OS X. I'm willing to put it up against any other option.
Your right as far as I know on your last point, not that I've done much searching, but I can hope there's something out there someday.
Itunes is the very definition of a black box. If you have an even slightly large library, it becomes a slow behemoth writing it's awkward binary-xml-shit files every time a change is made.
And no offense, you did not move your library across all those spots without issue. It's frankly not possible. Moving those files causes iTunes to lose it's absolute references to them and you have to do a reimport.
A combination of consolidating and setting the default media location and re-consolidating and holding option on launch etc will eventually get it to find all its media.
That's not the reason. It's because you choose to bitch about them instead of attempting to solve them, even though they are completely solvable problems that don't happen in a clean setup. Reproducing means nothing, except that you didn't bother to try and solve the problem.
> If you have an even slightly large library, it becomes a slow behemoth writing it's awkward binary-xml-shit files every time a change is made.
This is just patently false. See my other comment for a detailed explanation. Long and short of it is iTunes doesn't even use the XML file, it exists for 3rd party apps to use. If your machine locks up every time a 30MB file is written (written, not even accessed) then there is something wrong with your storage media, not iTunes.
Perhaps you have some sort of 3rd party syncing app that immediately accesses the iTunes XML every time it is re-written? That's more likely than Apple not noticing that their media player locks up every time when accessing a large library.
> And no offense, you did not move your library across all those spots without issue.
Hard to take offence to something I didn't say. My iTunes library has existed on all of those locations at one time or another, it wasn't the same library every time. Like I said, last time I recreated it was in 2009. It still existed in those locations and didn't randomly reset itself as you claim.
> It's frankly not possible. Moving those files causes iTunes to lose it's absolute references to them and you have to do a reimport.
Oh no! Exclamation marks everywhere! Click the song, browse to the song, iTunes asks if you want to check the folder for any other references. 5 minute scan later, all pointers are fixed. It's not only possible, it's dead simple.
It's almost like you could have discovered that with a simple Google search. Or hell, just actually trying instead of jumping immediately to whining.
It doesn't matter that iTunes doesn't read the XML file. Any machine will take at least a couple seconds to write out an entire 30MB file. And if it does this every single time you update a playcount or rename a playlist, and blocks your user interface during this, then there's a fundamental flaw with the software.
Yes, it does.
> Any machine will take at least a couple seconds to write out an entire 30MB file.
True, but if it's locking up iTunes every time that occurs then THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH YOUR MACHINE OR SETUP. End of story.
> And if it does this every single time you update a playcount or rename a playlist, and blocks your user interface during this, then there's a fundamental flaw with the software.
No doubt. Since that doesn't actually happen, there isn't such a fundamental flaw.
You wasted a lot of effort typing that reply. One of my more infuriating replies I've gotten here.
edit: Annnnnd a quick look at your other comments in this thread tell me everything I need to know. You're even running around telling other people describing the exact same problem and acting like they're crazy. You realize that something working for you doesn't mean it's bug free, right?
My media library takes an arbitrary number of sources, takes 2 minutes to parse my library, works with more file formats, doesn't store an incomprehensible, incompatible format that no one else can write, doesn't require inane Terms of Service and more. I'm very, very happy that iTunes works for you. For a ton of people, it's a damn headache.
I treat you like you're stupid because you present stupid little issues as insurmountable problems.
> (hell, enough to reproduce 90% of iTunes's features in my own media library/player)
Programmers IMO are some of the worst for jumping to "I can do this better!" instead of again attempting to solve the problem.
> You even imply that I run to whinning instead of Googling. Why don't you Google these issues. You'll find dozens of other people with the exact same issue.
I don't imply it, I say it. Because you do.
Also, Google offers the EXACT same solution: Clean up your machine because if it can't write a 30mb file that isn't even being read without locking up, there is something wrong with it.
> You wasted a lot of effort typing that reply.
Personally I think it was used perfectly.
> One of my more infuriating replies I've gotten here.
Yeah, being challenged on your BS can be frustrating. I'm glad I could be a part of that.
> Annnnnd a quick look at your other comments in this thread tell me everything I need to know. You're even running around telling other people describing the exact same problem and acting like they're crazy.
You call it crazy, I call it lazy. Whatever, it's still bitching over fixing. I'm not calling them crazy for having the problem, I'm calling them lazy for having the problem for so long and just bitching about it instead of doing something about it.
> You realize that something working for you doesn't mean it's bug free, right?
Of course, just because something isn't working on a particular setup doesn't mean its bug-ridden either.
>Why don't you Google these issues. You'll find dozens of other people with the exact same issue.
You're a stupid little fuck, aren't you. I DID Google them instead of whining first. You really think I sunk probably a hundred hours into writing something purely from scratch before Googling. Good god how can you breath with your head that far up Apple's ass?
>Of course, just because something isn't working on a particular setup doesn't mean its bug-ridden either.
And we've always been at war with Oceania.
You can hire this stupid little fuck for $100/hr, I'll solve all your impossible iTunes problems. If you're really that retarded, I'm sure it will be money well spent.
> Good god how can you breath with your head that far up Apple's ass?
...You presented the problem, idiot. I'm not just guessing as to what your issue was. You presented the simplest iTunes problem in the world to solve, and then acted like it was sufficient motivation to write a competitor.
Head up Apple's ass? I'm not the one so blinded by marketing I expect it to immediately work without issue. It's still software. The only one with unrealistic expectations of iTunes is you, namely that it should function perfectly on a machine that can't write 30mb without locking up.
> And we've always been at war with Oceania.
Give a break. Here: Send me your music player, $20 says I can get it to crash on launch.
Seriously, do you understand the absurdity of what you're claiming, outside of this application or your or I's anecdotes... that the claim that the software is bug free or works perfectly for everyone is just an outlandishly stupid thing to claim as an absolute?
>Give a break. Here: Send me your music player, $20 says I can get it to crash on launch.
Soon enough, I'm preparing to release it by the end of May. I'm not really sure how you plan on crashing it given it's design, but it's cute that you continue to make absurd assumptions and personal attacks.
I can't see the point difference between our comments, how would I know that? Moreover, why should I care? Congrats, you've proven other techs also don't like things that confuse them and would prefer to join in your bitching.
> Or are you one of these people that is never wrong and can't admit that you might not have experienced every possible use case or code path of iTunes?
You're acting like I'm saying iTunes is perfect. It's not, it's riddled with issues and a frank conversation on it's future is important. I'm just saying the issues most techs present to me, including the one you did, are the simplest issues to solve and indicative of a weird attitude techs have towards iTunes, where they assume it will fuck them over before trying anything to solve the problem.
If you had presented a real issue, I wouldn't have even continued. You instead presented the simplest one that only happens to novice users, so I laid into you appropriately.
> Seriously, do you understand the absurdity of what you're claiming, outside of this application or your or I's anecdotes... that the claim that the software is bug free or works perfectly for everyone is just an outlandishly stupid thing to claim as an absolute?
That is a ridiculous claim. Good thing I never once said that.
> but it's cute that you continue to make absurd assumptions and personal attacks.
My point was that any software on a machine with sufficient issues can crash. That wasn't an "absurd assumption or personal attack" it was verifiable truth.
Probably outliers with music libraries in the multi TB range
But for some reason. Apple can't get a decent programmer. Their software sucks. Plain down right sucks. I love using apple hardware but I can't stand any software made by them. (See: Xcode, Itunes, Safari)
If you prefer Emacs/Vim, OK, but I can't see a much better tool than XCode for Objective-C (and arguably C/C++), plus UI building. Version 4 is buggy and crashes, but then again it's a mostly complete rewrite of the old XCode codebase. 4.3 is stabler than previous 4.x releases --it will get better.
As for iTunes, I can't see any problem with it, besides handling a lot of different functionality in one app. Do you see many actual bugs in day to day use? Because using it for almost 10 years, I don't remember any.
Safari, yes, tend to do some stupid things. Though, Chrome, to which I migrated is also based on Apple code for the core engine.
Plus: the OS, Logic, Aperture, Pages, Keynote, all top notch apps.
Apple Safari uses WebKit - a free open source web browser engine. It's not Apple's code, it existed way before Apple got into browser business.
I used Konqueror long before Apple made Safari, so I am aware of the history. It's hardly the whole story though.
Safari uses Webkit, but Apple made Webkit. Webkit did not exist before Apple got into the browsing business. What did exist was khtml made by the KDE project.
That engine was a nice stable base that Apple used to build Webkit upon but it was lightyears behind the Webkit we know. Apple put TONS of work into Webkit and made it into one of the rendering engines that it is today, long before even Google got involved.
Apple is intentionally keeping iTunes on Windows a "sub-par" experience to attract more users to move over to MacOS. I think the majority of non-power don't understand the problem is with iTunes specifically, and would say something like "The whole damn computer sucks".
Having never been an Mac OS user, I had always assumed they put all their effort into the Mac version, and then did some kind of nasty port and hacked away until a windows version worked. Not a conspiracy theory, so much as a lack of interest from Apple to make a decent windows version.
On windows, I use winamp. It supports my iPod, and actually allows me to listen to and manage my music collection.
Edit: It's been a while since I followed Amarok developments, turns out it's now available multi platform... Starts download on all machines...
I actually think I've heard this one before, especially when the software was just being released on Windows...
And every time a new update comes, I click "update" on the automatic updater hoping that this time they fixed it, but no such luck.
I was so happy when iOS started updating without a computer.
Some of the other problems I've been having:
iTunes gives me an alert saying some tracks can not be synced and so the sync process hangs until I close the prompt or manually stop the sync on my iPhone.
If I remove a large app on my phone (example: the 1Gb Max Payne game) and then attempt to sync the phone after, iTunes decides to install the app again which means a lengthy transfer of a 1Gb file.
If I make a change to my playlist on the phone and sync, two versions of the playlist are created (not always reproducible).
iTunes is a horrible horrible experience on either OS. I've given up using it as a music player, in favor of Ecoute. Pity I still need it for my iPhone.
It takes longer than any other app to power up and then greets you with a "Loading..." routine. In case you get over this it will do it again every time you switch to a different item on the menu, e.g. Search. It's like it's not sure of itself and must phone home before displaying the UI to, I don't know, show a user the "Purchased" screen. Same deal with the App Store and Mail apps. All very clunky.
It wouldn't be too much to ask to cache what has been loaded WHILE the app is running, is it?
Or even maybe keep it cached w/o the pictures. Hell, they could maybe poll 50 entries instead of 25 and cache it with no problem (excluding graphics).
While I am at this, WHY does mobile safari have to reload a page every time i switch tabs/press the home button and instantly power it up again? It's not only hugely annoying on a non 3g device, it also makes no sense, you should at least be able to set an interval/turn it off...
I'm still looking for a viable replacement on OSX.
Actually scratch that. More urgently I'm seeking a Finder-replacement that doesn't lock up for seconds at a time all the time. In 2012. On a 2 GHz computer. With a SSD. Truly magical!
You can generate a sysdiagnose report which will contain too much information by pressing ctrl-opt-cmd-shift-. when experiencing a problem. The spindump file inside it is quite readable to a systems programmer and may be helpful.
Seriously, is this HN or YouTube? It's just ridiculous how whiny techs get when it comes to iTunes, OS X and iOS. I can solve an endless stream of technical problems all day with varying requirements and urgency, but syncing my iPhone is such a mystery!
Give me a break. Here: Create a new partition on your drive, install a fresh copy of OS X. Does the Finder still lock up? No? What a surprise. OS X is a preferable OS for some people. It's not going to hold your hand and wipe your ass for you FFS, you still need to put in the slightest bit of effort.
Then the duplicate playlists that appear out of nowhere for whatever reason. But they're only duplicated on the device.
Then there's the need to use a third-party hack to detect and remove dead tracks, or add new ones when I'm not purchasing musing from iTunes. As far as Apple is concerned, I must purchase my music from them, not from Amazon. So something so mundane as a folder watch isn't needed.
It's unfortunate that we love the devices but have no choice but to put up with the horrid crap that is the software.
Now a Windows user hears about all the hoopla about how great Apple interfaces are, looks at iTunes and says "that cannot be true".
It manages all the references incredibly good, picture captions, TOC... it requires more work than Office, but I think is more rewarding.
Also, Word can track revision history on each document. What's the equivalent for LaTeX? A git repo?
The upshot of network effects is that if you work for anybody but yourself, a Windows PC with a moderately recent Microsoft Office is a requirement.
I agree with revision history, Word probably manages it pretty good. But git repos aren't a bad option if you are used to them. I personally use Dropbox, so I have a simple revision history without problems.
Anyways, I didn't say LaTeX was the perfect solution, that's why I said that he maybe had some impediment to use it instead of Office.
For internal stuff, and papers where our group has sole authorship (and some enlightened partners) we have a very nice set of scripts for auto-generating git repos with all the latex styles and generic skeletons for us.
Given the default behavior of organizing all of your media within the iTunes directory, it makes perfect sense and would be a great feature. I'm sure there are other people more qualified to comment, but my first impression of the problem is that without some clever implementation there would be some major speed issues with large libraries.
I was thinking that you meant live monitoring, i.e. your library would be a reflection of your directory structure with additional metadata stored in unit sections so that it scales better.
I mean, a solution is out there: very good. Nevertheless, it doesn't justify or excuse iTunes for not having this feature.
I never understood why it has to have a system reboot either, and I'm on a Mac. I don't like rebooting, I just like to let my Mac sleep!
Maybe people were used to reboot their computers 7 years ago but these days, you can entirely work and reboot only for system patches.
But maybe Apple uses a toolkit that is supposed to be compatible with older versions of Windows as well. In that case, just reboot that dinosaur.
Why is there no way to simply change my settings without syncing??
Another annoying "feature" - iTunes handles syncing everything BUT pictures. Why?? Why do I need to open Windows to drag/drop the files in a folder?
The worst problem I've had is error codes when trying to wifi sync, and that was solved by just disabling and reenabling the feature.